DON'T WORRY: by Christopher Bursk

What good is it to worry?
Thoughtless advice. Of course
you should get out of bed and sit by the window
and think and think. Do this
all night if you have to. Go back over
old ground. I can’t complain
your father liked to say,
but of course he could
and did. Worrying
is one advantage 
a human has over radishes and geodes
and garden slugs. Can a flower
stay up all night and fret
about what it should have said and didn’t?
Does a tree argue with itself 
over whether it is giving its leaves too much
or too little independence? 
Will the fire second-guess itself
and stop to apologize 
to the log, the house, the child it has seized?
And the stars?
They go on stupidly burning. 
You look out your window.
Your son is not home. It’s been hours
since the boy slammed the door and drove off
and all you can think of
is wet roads and your son’s foot heavy on the pedal.
Imagine each curve of the highway. Each
disaster. Go ahead:
worry. You are not starlight. 
Not the tree you gaze at. The wind, all night,
mistaking compliance 
for surrender, goes on tugging at leaves. 


- Christopher Bursk